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Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own;
Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind,
And, even with something of a mother's mind,

And no unworthy aim,

The homely nurse doth all she can To make her foster-child, her inmate man,

Forget the glories he hath known, And that imperial palace whence he came.

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Behold the child among his new-born blisses-
A six years' darling of a pigmy* size !
See, where 'mid work of his own hand he lies,
Fretted by sallies of his mother's kisses,
With light upon him from his father's eyes !
See, at his feet, some little plan or chart,
Some fragment from his dream of human life,
Shaped by himself with newly learnéd art-
A wedding or a festival, a mourning or a funeral-

And this hath now his heart,
And unto this he frames his song.


Then will he fit his tongue
To dialogues of business, love, or strife;

But it will not be long

Ere this be thrown aside,

And with new joy and pride
The little actor cons another part-

86, 87. the child ... A six years' darling.

Though the idea applies to
childhood in general, Words-

worth had in his mind a par.
ticular child Hartley Cole

LITERARY ANALYSIS. - 78-85. Express in your own words the idea in stanza vi.

78. Alls her lap. What is the figure of speech? (See Def. 20.) 82, 83. homely nurse ... foster-child. Explain these expressions. 89. Fretted. What is the meaning of the word as here used? 102. The little actor cons, etc. Is the language here literal or figurative?

Filling from time to time his “humorous stage”
With all the persons, down to palsied age,
That life brings with her in her equipage;
As if his whole vocation were endless imitation.




Thou, whose exterior semblance doth belie

Thy soul's immensity !
Thou best philosopher, who yet dost keep
Thy heritage ! thou eye among the blind,
That, deaf and silent, read'st the eternal deep
Haunted forever by the eternal mind-

Mighty prophet! Seer blest,

On whom those truths do rest,
Which we are toiling all our lives to find,
In darkness lost, the darkness of the grave!
Thou over whom thy immortality
Broods like the day, a master o'er a slave,
A presence which is not to be put by!
Thou little child, yet glorious in the might
Of heaven-born freedom on thy being's height,
Why with such earnest pains dost thou provoke
The years to bring the inevitable yoke,
Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife?
Full soon thy soul shall have her earthly freight,
And custom lie upon thee with a weight
Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!



104. persons = Lat. persona.

LITERARY ANALYSIS.-103. “humorous stage.” From what author is this expression quoted ?

107. Thou. See note to lines 86, 87.
107, 108. whose ... Immensity. Express the thought in your own words.
109, 110. who yet ... heritage. Explain by reference to line 67.
110. thou eye. What is the figure of speech?

116. This line was omitted by the author in a later edition. It is wanted for the rhyme's sake.

125. thy soul shall have, etc. What is the figure of speech? 126. custom. Explain the word as here used.


The song


O joy! that in our embers
Is something that doth live,
That nature yet remembers

What was so fugitive.
The thought of our past years in me doth breed
Perpetual benediction : not, indeed,
For that which is most worthy to be blest,
Delight and liberty, the simple creed
Of childhood, whether busy or at rest,
With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his breast.

Not for these I raise

of thanks and praise ;
But for those obstinate questionings
Of sense and outward things,
Fallings from us, vanishings;

Blank misgivings of a creature
Moving about in worlds not realized,
High instincts before which our mortal nature
Did tremble like a guilty thing surprised !

But for those first affections,

Those shadowy recollections,

Which, be they what they may,
Are yet the fountain light of all our day,
Are yet a master light of all our seeing;

Uphold us, cherish, and have power to make
Our noisy years seem moments in the being
Of the eternal Silence: truths that wake,

To perish never;
Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavor,




LITERARY ANALYSIS.-140. obstinate questionings. See Wordsworth's note, page 300.

142. Fallings from us, vanishings: that is, fits of utter dreaminess and abstraction, when nothing material seems solid, but everything mere mist and shadow.

153. seem moments: that is, seem but moments.


Nor man nor boy,
Nor all that is at enmity with joy,
Can utterly abolish or destroy !

Hence, in a season of calm weather,

Though inland far we be,
Our souls have sight of that immortal sea

Which brought us hither,

Can in a moment travel thither,
And see the children sport upon the shore,
And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.




Then sing, ye birds, sing, sing a joyous song,

And let the young lambs bound

As to the tabor's sound !
We in thought will join your throng,

Ye that pipe and ye that play,
Ye that through your hearts to-day

Feel the gladness of the May!
What though the radiance which was once so bright
Be now forever taken from my sight,
Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendor in the grass, of glory in the flower;

We will grieve not-rather find
Strength in what remains behind;
In the primal sympathy
Which, having been, must ever be;
In the soothing thoughts that spring
Out of human suffering;

In the faith that looks through death,
In years that bring the philosophic mind.



LITERARY ANALYSIS.—160-166. The pupil will observe the grandeur of the thought imaged in these splendid lines, which should be committed to memory.

167-169. Then sing ... sound. What kind of sentence grammatically?
174-185. What kind of sentence rhetorically?
185. In ... mind. Explain.

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And O ye fountains, meadows, hills, and groves,
Forebode not any severing of our loves !
Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;
I only have relinquished one delight,
To live beneath your more habitual sway.
I love the brooks which down their channels fret,
Even more than when I tripped lightly as they ;
The innocent brightness of a new-born day

Is lovely yet;
The clouds that gather round the setting sun
Do take a sober coloring from an eye
That hath kept watch o'er man's mortality!
Another race hath been, and other palms are won.
Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.



LITERARY ANALYSIS.—189. only. What does the word modify?
201, 202. With what beautiful thought does the poem close ?

NOTE BY WORDSWORTH. - This was composed during my residence at Town-End, Grasmere. Two years at least passed between the writing of the first four stanzas and the remaining part. To the attentive and competent reader the whole sufficiently explains itself, but there may be no harm in adverting here to particular feelings or experiences of my own mind on which the structure of the poem partly rests. Nothing was more difficult for me in childhood than to admit the notion of death as a state applicable to my own being. I have elsewhere said,

A simple child
That lightly draws its breath
And feels its life in every limb,
What should it know of death?

But it was not so much from the source of animal vivacity that my difficulty came as from a sense of the indomitableness of the spirit within me. I used to brood over the stories of Enoch and Elijah, and almost persuade myself that, whatever might become of others, I should be translated in something of the same way to heaven. With a feeling congenial to this, I was often unable to think of external things as having external existence, and I com

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